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Help Is Out There For COVID 'Long Haulers'

Friday 6 November 2020


From U.S. News:


Woman sitting on bed
The road to recovery for post-COVID-19 syndrome
may not be quick, but it should not be lonely.
(Getty Images)

Help Is Out There for COVID ‘Long Haulers’

Clinicians should draw on knowledge surrounding chronic fatigue syndrome in treating patients suffering from the lingering effects of COVID-19.

By Ana M. Palacio, M.D., MPH and Nancy Klimas, M.D.
October 22, 2020
Copyright 2020 © U.S. News & World Report L.P.

THE FACT THAT thousands of people are experiencing persistent symptoms after COVID-19 has become undeniable. The data shows that many COVID-19 survivors remain unable to return to pre-COVID level of activities months after diagnosis, and the numbers are growing.

What is also undeniable is how ill-prepared the health system seems to be to meaningfully help these COVID "long haulers" return to wellness. In fact, the presentation of this apparent post-viral syndrome has stumped experts and clinicians who have struggled to find guidance on how to treat the condition. This hard reality has prompted long haulers to create or join social media-based support groups in search of answers, advice or, at the very least, solidarity.

Importantly, the constellation of post-viral infection symptoms described by the long haulers is far from new. In fact, similar issues have been described after the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) outbreak in 2003 and in relation to infections with Epstein Barr virus (a cause of mononucleosis) and other exposures. Public health experts have acknowledged that the persistent post-COVID symptoms are eerily similar to those of myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), a well-described complex neurological condition that is often triggered by serious infections.

The question, then, is: Why are we so stumped by these post-COVID long haulers?


Full article...



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